Top Gun takes to the skies in this arcade style air combat game coming soon to the Playstation Network, Published by Paramount Digital Entertainment and developed by Double Six Games. Double Six Games have produced such games as South Park Letâ€™s Go Tower Defence Play game and â€˜Burn Zombie Burnâ€™.
Top Gun is an arcade air combat game thatâ€™s split into two single player campaigns with a total of 11 missions. The single player game is split across 3 different areas; prologue, flight school and Indian Ocean.Â In flight school, players enroll as Maverick at Top Gun Academy and train to handle the breakneck speeds when hitting the â€œafter burnerâ€ and the â€œtunnel visionâ€ that poses a threat during high G-force manoeuvres. After training to be the best of the best, players join the fight above the Indian Ocean for 11 total missions, staged at various times of day, and Horde Mode, where players get to test their flight combat abilities as they take down endless waves of enemies of increasing difficulty. Top scores willÂ also appear on leader boards. The game is slightly different from the original movie in which only 10% of the flying was over the Indian Ocean. Double Six Games have increased that to around 70% of the flying. The script has been written by Jack Epps Jr, who wrote the original movie, to be very close to the actual film.
Top Gun also features five multiplayer modes, where up to sixteen players can relive the thrills from the film and interactively experience US Navy air combat.Â Thereâ€™s a great selection of aircrafts to choose from such as F14 Tomcat, F16 Falcon, F/A-18 Hornet for the US Navy and MiG-31 Foxhound,MiG-29 Fulcrum and Su-27 Flanker for the Soviets.
Players take the role of Maverick, who soars through the sky trying to shoot down jet fighters and attack enemies or defend bases. Maverick remains silent throughout the game but other characters from the movie can be heard. Double Six Games did not use the original movie music due to licenses; they did however produce cover music which plays happily in the background and with the sky as your limit, itâ€™s easy to see why this game is enjoyable to play, Chasing and hunting down enemies in the sky, soaring through the vast environment of 50 km squared in each of the levels.Â I was impressed by the planes moveability and how fast you could shift through the sky and the wide selection of missions that were on offer. All the missions are dated and time stamped. Players may choose which missiles they wish to equip the plane with, from short range, medium range and long range. The short range encourages dog fighting, whereas the long range offer the chance to snipe enemies from a distance.
Players get their briefing before the mission and the game has some amazing in game cutscenes with voice over actors. You do not fly the missions alone, but have a trusty wingman with which you can interact. The wingman is able to target specific enemies and is definitely more help, than a hindrance. Players get the chance to see different wingman through the course of the game.
Unlike games such as After Burner Climax, which allowed no variation from a chosen path, Top Gun gives the player freedom to fly where they want. Players have a co pilot who sits in the back of the plane and basically comments on everything the player does. For instance, every time you kill an enemy on the ground or in the air, heâ€™ll shout something out at you,Â which is usually something very cheesy. After all the game is based on an ’80s’ movie, so a certain amount of cheesiness should be expected. Top Gun offers much more speed than the likes of Ace Combat or Hawx, and there is even some character progression.
Although I was not an experienced pilot, the controls felt responsive and the graphics were polished and clear. I had a little trouble with the game and, although my gameplay never got any better, I think that was more due to the fact that I hardly ever play flying games. Despite my lack of piloting skills, itâ€™s an amazing amount of fun to play and you really feel sucked into the atmosphere. The game does offer lessons in movement control and CFI. Double Six Games explained to me that CFI stands for Control Flight Instability, which makes flying more moveable and allows you to perform some crazy moves. The effects of G-force are well represented in the game and will result you in blacking out should you push too hard. Thereâ€™s plenty of sound feedback when locking onto targets or when dispensing missiles to alert players to whatâ€™s happening. This is welcome as combat can be really fast paced. The arcade element of the game is that you donâ€™t have to manage missiles left, right and centre as there is infinite ammunition,Â your guns don’t overheat and there is infinite health. The controls are camera relative and not player relative, and the game runs very fast. The planes can be customized with different skins and players can unlock different helmets while playing single player mode. You canâ€™t change the paint work on your plane, but thereâ€™s plenty of skins to choose from.
Double Six Games have tried to make this a more drop in and out arcady feel air combat game and do something different while working with the parameters of what was allowed by Paramount Digital Entertainment. In terms of the filmâ€™s story, they tried to work closely with Paramount. Youâ€™ve still got Maverick, Goose, Iceman and Viper, and the only real difference is the boss in the game is called Ivan and he was not in the film. Players can learn about other characters such as Hollywood and Merlin. Sadly the game doesnâ€™t have a love story. Sorry folks, no Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis steamy love scenes.
This game has been in development for a year, using their own in-house engine. With the various planes, missions and multiplayer modes available, Double Six Games have packed as much as possible into what is a downloadable title.
Finally, the question on everyone’s lips – Does the game include a volleyball mini-game? Sadly not. Although the developers were keen to include this, the publishers were not so inclined.